Celtel Sierra Leone is to get Le150 billion from the recently signed World Bank loan of $320m for expansion of the network in the country.
Already, over the past two days Masinke and New Magbase have come on as part of the fast-expanding network while Shenge and Serabu will come on before the end of September, Managing Director Celtel Ted Sautti-Phiri disclosed on Monday.
He also said that other sites due to come up soon are Fadugu, Mamawa and Madina. Fadugu, he stated was a big engineering challenge due to the terrain which had forced them to use other means earlier to get to Kabala.
However, the MD stated that the Celtel engineers have done a tremendous job in finding a solution to the problem. Already, he noted, Kamabai is already on as part of the fast expanding network.
He explained that Celtel uses about Le3m fuel on every site monthly for about 120 sites nationwide and sometimes it is a Herculean task getting to these sites. He also stated that the IFC which is the private sector arm of the World Bank loan will enable Celtel SL to put up 23 more sites before the end of the year.
“Already we are covering about 83% of the population in Sierra Leone and with this soft loan, Sierra Leone will be able to erect new sites. One of such sites which he said is already being negotiated is that of Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone which will enable the college to communicate freely with the rest of the country.
So far we are doing a very good job and in the corporate field in Sierra Leone today we are one of if not the best,” he added. The Managing Director confirmed that already the money is being used from the loan.